Mayor Brings Christmas Joy to Children’s Unit

7th December 2023
Patient Lydia in the Children's ward meets Santa and the mayor

The Paediatric Unit at the Ulster Hospital welcomed some special guests, with a surprise visit by Santa Claus and the Mayor of Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council, who came along bearing gifts to bring some festive cheer to the children in the Unit.

Santa Claus and the Mayor met the children, their families and healthcare staff at the hospital and distributed selection boxes to the children to brighten their spirits during their hospital stay.

This heart-warming initiative takes place each year, which reflects the City Council’s commitment in supporting the community, especially during times when a little extra joy can have a significant impact.

Lydia Harrison who is a patient in the Paediatric Unit, was so excited to see Santa and the Mayor, her mum Amy said, “As soon as we heard the bells coming, Lydia was so surprised.  All the children got up out of bed and pulled the curtains back.  Lydia is autistic and she loves Santa and especially chocolate!”

Welcoming the Mayor to the Unit, Hospital Play Specialist, Sharon Millar commented, “It is always a very exciting time for the children.  They love to meet Santa and the Mayor too and get a little treat.

“Some children may be in hospital for a varying length of time and may not have had the opportunity to meet Santa outside.  This is so lovely that they can enjoy this experience while being nursed in hospital.

“We would like to say a big thank you to the Mayor and Santa for coming along to the Unit and taking time out of their busy schedules!”

Delighted to spend time on the ward, Mayor Cllr Andrew Gowan added, “It is so lovely to see a smile on the children’s faces, if we can bring Santa along to meet the children and give them a little token in the run-up to Christmas, then the visit is worth it!”